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No St David’s Day bank holiday for teachers, says council

04 Feb 2022 3 minute read
St David’s Day parade. Picture by Llywelyn2000 (CC BY-SA 4.0).

Richard Evans, local democracy reporter 

Teachers in Gwynedd will not be given an additional day’s bank holiday, a day off in-lieu or extra pay to mark St David’s Day, the council has confirmed.

This is despite classroom assistants enjoying a St David’s Day bank-holiday bonus payment.

Gwynedd County Council has also announced schools will remain open and that day-to-day services in the county, such as bins and recycling, will continue on St David’s Day.

Council offices will close, and office staff will enjoy a day at home or out and about while staff working in vital services will instead be given an extra day off in-lieu.

But whilst most staff in Gwynedd will receive March 1 off or an extra day’s holiday, teachers are excluded from the deal. Classroom assistants are the one exception and will get extra pay for working the day.

A Gwynedd Council spokesman said: “Gwynedd Council’s Cabinet has decided that its workers should receive an additional day’s holiday this year to celebrate St David, Wales’ patron saint. It is also a part of a wider campaign by the Council’s members to try and ensure that the 1st of March is a designated bank holiday for the people of Wales in due course.

“The Council’s workers, that work to local government terms and conditions, will receive a day’s holiday on the 1st of March 2022, on which Gwynedd Council offices will be closed for the day.

“Any staff who will be working on 1 March (care staff, waste and recycling teams, etc) will have the additional day to take on another date.”

‘Does not have the authority’ 

“The Council does not have the authority to allocate an additional day’s leave to the authority’s teachers – the terms and conditions of teachers are discussed and formed at a national level and therefore the Council does not have the authority to issue the additional day to those staff members.

“The terms and conditions of classroom assistants are discussed locally here in Gwynedd, and therefore those staff members and other supporting staff members that work in our schools, do have the right to this additional day’s leave.

“However, as classroom assistants and school supporting staff work to a school term, it’s not possible for them to take the 1st of March as a day off or take the day on another date. Therefore, those staff members will receive an adjustment in their pay for this year.”

Gwynedd Cllr Alwyn Gruffydd welcomed the plans.

“It’s a long time coming, isn’t it? St David was alive in the sixth century. We’ve been waiting 1,500 years. I’m all for it,” he said.

“Of course there is disparity. The teachers have their own contracts.

“We should have a day off to celebrate St David’s Day. We’ve got to remember our history. Unfortunately, if children won’t hear about St David’s Day in school, they won’t know about it at all. I would like to see this become a national holiday. You would think a council like Gwynedd would be enthusiastic about a St David’s Day bank holiday, wouldn’t you?”

Gwynedd County Council’s cabinet decided in January that staff would enjoy an extra day’s holiday to mark Wales’ national celebration. The extra bank holiday will cost the council around £200,000. The move followed Westminster refusing to devolve powers to the Welsh Government to decide national holidays.

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2 years ago

The people who concur with London’s refusal to devolve this right of designating bank holidays are the enemies of the Welsh people and culture. No ifs, no buts, no more pathetic excuses.

Argol Fawr!
Argol Fawr!
2 years ago
Reply to  Quornby

I agree, but what the heck does that have to do with a County council gifting their office staff a holiday and other staff a days pay in lieu at the rate payers expense? When everyone else look on in disbelief. If we’re to have a St David’s day bank holiday, it wont be done by burdening county rate payers. If the councillors felt this was the best course of action then they should forgo the expenses they claim by an equivalent amount instead of dumping the cost on us!

Grayham Jones
2 years ago

All welsh people in wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 must have St David’s off its time for a new wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 stop being little Englanders and be proud to be welsh

Carol Loughlin
Carol Loughlin
2 years ago
Reply to  Grayham Jones

*Wales *Welsh

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
2 years ago

This what happens when you have Whitehall dictate our terms while allowing Scotland & NI the power to create a bank holiday to celebrate their patron saints. If I were the Welsh Government I’d Ignore Whitehall and make St’ David’s Day a national holiday in Wales for all to enjoy, young & old. After all Mark Drakeford has a mandate from the Welsh people as newly elected First Minister, unlike the Tories who have no legitimacy to rule in Wales other than the aid of the English block vote. Anyway, we don’t need Conservative consent to create a bank holiday.… Read more »

Argol Fawr!
Argol Fawr!
2 years ago

I really wish for an all Wales St David’s day bank holiday. But this Gwynedd policy is nothing more than a very expensive botch up at the rate payers expense, just when we’re all going to be hit by an almighty cost of living tsunami. Cwilydd.

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